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John the Baptist Reproving Herod

Photo credit: National Trust Images

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The scene is described in the New Testament in Mark 6: 17–20. John the Baptist is shown castigating a bethroned Herod for marrying his brother’s wife, Herodias. She looks on to his left, supported by her daughter Salome, still holding her tambourine whilst her lyre is propped up against a stool. As a consequence John was imprisoned, and later, thanks to Herod’s reluctant fulfilment of his promise to grant Salome whatever she wished for, after she had danced for him, beheaded. The artist was a forerunner of the Pre-Raphaelites, much influenced by the German Nazarenes, who turned to painting religious subjects of this kind after his conversion to Catholicism. It was an early purchase of the 1st Lord Penryhn in 1848 and later disliked by him.

National Trust, Penrhyn Castle



John the Baptist Reproving Herod




oil on canvas


H 119.5 x W 171.5 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

accepted by HM Government in lieu of inheritance tax from the estate of Lady Jane Douglas-Pennant and allocated to the National Trust, 2005

Work type



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Normally on display at

National Trust, Penrhyn Castle

Bangor, Gwynedd LL57 4HN Wales

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